Archaeologists have found the remains of what they believe to be a henge monument and Roman pottery center in Nottinghamshire, England. The pottery finds make it a site of “national importance”.
At the Middlebeck housing site, experts were called in to survey the area where they identified evidence of human activity. Dating back 12,000 years, they discovered 73 Roman kilns, as well as a circular ditch with upright timbers.
The pottery, an Oxford archaeology spokesperson told BBC News, “probably represents a previously unknown pottery production centre that is of regional, if not national, importance.”
An enclosure dating to 3300 BCE contained the remains of internal posts and pits. The team believes they may have formed one or more concentric arcs of erect timbers. Situated at the beginning of a spring may indicate a larger cultural and religious signifcance.
Additionally, a polished stone axe head from Langdale, Cumbria was identified and is believed to be from the same period. It was, however, found with Iron Age pottery from roughly 3,000 years later and has marks indicating possible reuse as a whetstone.
Thirty-five cremation burials from the Bronze Age were also found on site, with necklace beads from the same time. The team believes these are traces of a large Iron Age farming cohort.
The area is known for its connection to the 17th–century Civil War, but there have also been traces of human existence identified in previous excavations that date back to the end of the ice ages.
A 694-acre extension south of Newark, Middlebeck is expected to grow to accommodate more than 3,000 homes that will be serviced by a £100 million ($1.24 million) link road.